A loan of $750 helped to buy pants, blouses, shirts, sheets, and quilts.

Mercedes Maribel's story

The Communal Bank Los Tres Ángeles meets every 15 days in the Montecristi Canton, known for its rich pre-colonial culture and the artisan crafts, known for at a national and international level. This is where the famous straw hats come from.

Mercedes, 26, lives here. She is married and has four children, ages 11, 10, 8, and 2. The three oldest are in school. Her husband is a builder.

Mercedes sells all kinds of clothing, sheets, and quilts, with the idea of earning some money herself and with it, advancing her household. She sells by going from door to door. She also sells in her home, where her best-known customers come. She takes advantage of the mornings to go out and sell, because that is when her children are in school. She sells to her customers on credit and receives a payment every 15 days. Every time she needs merchandise, she goes to Guayaquil to buy it. She started her business with the first loan that she got from the bank, and she is very grateful, as she is able to earn something for the good of her family.

She is going to use this loan to buy more merchandise, like: pants, blouses, shirts, sheets, and quilts. She has been part of the Communal Bank from the beginning, and she likes it because she started her business thanks to the first loan. Her dream is to see her children finish their studies and be professionals.

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Translated from Spanish by Kiva volunteer Caitlin Jones

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